Do Stores Sell Axolotl? (Complete Buying Guide)

Say hello to the solitary creatures – axolotls. They’re amphibians and can be found in Mexico. There are many axolotl enthusiasts who can find them in some parts of the U.S. as well. 

The question is – Do stores sell axolotl? Are they allowed to do so? You might want to keep axolotl as a pet, but there are some things you ought to keep in mind. 

Axolotl isn’t a regular pet – this amphibian doesn’t need excessive handling, walks, talks, and attention. 

Did you know they live in water and have a Pokemon-like appearance? Perhaps this is the reason why many people want to keep them as pets – they’re different! 

There are some parts in the United States where you can find axolotls. Some of the exotic pet stores might have axolotls, but you need to check if it’s even allowed in your state.

Do Stores Sell Axolotl

We understand that you might have various queries in your head. That’s precisely why we have written this elaborate post for you. 

This article will unravel everything you need to know about owning axolotls as pets and some buying tips as well. Let’s dive in! 

Can you actually BUY or sell axolotls?

Selling axolotls is prohibited in some parts of the United States of America. However, there are some parts that allow you to keep axolotls as pets. 

Since it’s an endangered species, selling is not permitted in some states. In case you are in New Mexico, you will be able to own an axolotl legally. 

Many scientists have taken the axolotls for research purposes too. 

Trading of axolotls isn’t permitted in some states, but if it is, you can go ahead and buy them. 

How to find an axolotl near you? 

Axolotl hails from Mexico. But, they’re an endangered species. It’s easy to find axolotls in Mexico, but there aren’t too many in the wild. 

You can ask any exotic pet center whether they have axolotls or not. 

Make sure it’s permitted to keep axolotl as a pet as you might not want to get in trouble later on. 

You could also ask axolotl owners if they have any babies with them. Private aquatic breeders might have axolotls too. 

You can simply do a keyword search of ‘axolotl near me’ to find these rare species. 

Mistakes that Axolotl Owners Make

Axolotls may look like they’re immortal, but they’re not. If you don’t take good care of them, there is a possibility you might lose them sooner than you think. 

If you’ve gone ahead and purchased one, here are some of the mistakes that axolotl owners make. You should take cues from them and not make the same mistakes. 

1.) Exposing the aquarium to direct sunlight – You shouldn’t be doing this. Axolotl parents or owners should keep the aquarium in a dark and cool place. You should never let the temperature get too high as this could affect the health of your axolotl badly. 

2.) Keeping small fishes with the axolotl – It is not advisable for you to keep small fishes with the axolotl. They are solitary creatures. Moreover, the axolotls might see the smaller fishes as food. Don’t be surprised if the axolotl gobbles up the smaller fishes. 

Axolotl aquarium

3.) Choosing a small aquarium – A small aquarium can be deadly for an axolotl. It’s not because they need a bigger space – it’s because they get 1 to 2 feet long when they grow up. You need a bigger aquarium for your axolotl. 

4.) Buying small size gravel for the tank – This is a big no! The axolotls might ingest the smaller gravel. This is one of the biggest concerns because axolotls could die by ingesting gravel. You must ensure that the gravel is big enough for them to walk on and not ingest. 

5.) Buying the axolotl from unreliable sources – We understand that you are excited about keeping an axolotl at home but don’t buy it from an unreliable source as it might get you into deep trouble. 

6.) Not putting a lid on top – Axolotls are silent creatures, but if they get startled, they might jump out of the aquarium. Use a tank cover to keep them safe and away from the sun.

These creatures like to have a slumber party of their own – no guests invited. Let them sleep peacefully by keeping a tank cover on top. 

Was this helpful for you? We’re not done yet! The next section will tell you some of the most important buying tips that you need to keep in mind. 

Axolotl Buying Tips and Facts 

Since you will be buying an axolotl for the very first time, there are some buying tips you need to keep in mind. 

Here’s a quick section that highlights the important axolotl buying tips. 

1.) Cost – Axolotl can cost between $20 to $1500. The adult axolotl will cost more than a juvenile one. In case you get an axolotl in a rare color, the cost will be more. Speak to the exotic pet store owner or breeder about the price range. In general, the cost of an axolotl starts from $20. 

2.) Shelter – You need an aquarium for your axolotl. They can grow 1 to 2 feet long, so it is crucial for you to get a bigger tank. The volume capacity should be at least 10 to 20 gallons. Height is not a consideration because axolotls live at the bottom of the tank. 

3.) Gravel – You should put gravel on the bottom of the tank. This gives the axolotl something to grab when they sit at the bottom of the tank. However, don’t let them eat the gravel.

If the gravel is too small, they might eat. How do you prevent them from eating gravel? Make sure the gravels are large enough so that the axolotl gets a rocky terrain to walk on. 

4.) Filter – The strength of the filter should be low. If you find your axolotl coming up to the surface of the water and gasping some air, then there is some issue with the filter. Speak to the pet store owner or breeder to find the right filter for the aquarium. 

5.) A lid for the shelter – There are instances where axolotls have jumped out of the aquarium. You need to put a lid on it to ensure that your axolotl doesn’t go out of its habitat. 

Whenever you head out to buy an axolotl, make sure you buy gravel, a tank cover, a low-strength filter, and a large tank. 

Does your axolotl need a companion? 

When buying an axolotl, you might be tempted to buy other fishes as well. The answer is – NO. 

You shouldn’t keep a companion in the same aquarium, especially a fish. The axolotl may start thinking that the fish is its feed. They will eat the fish sooner or later. 

Moreover, axolotls are solitary creatures so don’t exactly need a companion unless it’s time for mating. 

Your axolotl will be satisfied and at peace alone or with a fellow axolotl. But, do they need a companion? Not really! 

Axolotl – Water or Land Creatures? 

Axolotl’s natural habitat is inside water. Of course, you can take them out of the aquarium, but don’t leave them gasping for air too long. 

Returning them to their natural habitat is preferable – don’t let them walk on land for too long. 

They are not accustomed to breathing oxygen for too long. Clean water in the aquarium and the right flow are preferable. Don’t commit the mistake of keeping them out of their natural habitat. 

Please ensure the water is favorable for your axolotl because they get stressed too soon. A stressed axolotl will have curled gills, so make sure you notice any sign of discomfort. 

Also, axolotls like it dark and cool. So, don’t keep their aquarium in a space where there is too much light or Sun exposure. 

Axolotl as Pets: Yes, or NO? 

Axolotls are not exactly your regular pets. You can look at them all day – but you don’t get to pet them throughout the day. 

They won’t play fetch with you or understand what you are trying to say. 

These amphibians don’t have eardrums – so axolotl can’t really hear you in the way you would want them to. They can hear vibrations, but not voices or music. 

The natural environment for an axolotl is water, so don’t try to take them out of it. If you give them a good environment to live in and ensure that the water flow and temperature are just right, then the axolotl will be happy. 

As for your query on whether they are good pets or not – you can’t call an axolotl a pet because they don’t need your love to survive. 

Just give them a good environment to live in. They’re solitary creatures, so they won’t need a lot of handling or human interaction.

Does it mean they’re incapable of showing and receiving affection? Well, absolutely not! Just don’t cuddle or pet them though. Once they trust you, they will greet you! 


1. Why is the axolotl so fascinating?

Axolotls are fascinating due to their uncanny appearance. They look like Pokemon and have a unique way of communicating during mating season. 

These silent creatures stay quiet and their appearance tempts people to buy them. 

2. What are axolotl salamanders?

Axolotl salamanders are amphibians. They live in water and can be found in Mexico and some states of America. 

The axolotl salamanders don’t have great eyesight. In fact, they don’t have eardrums either. But this species can hear vibrations. 

3. Can you pet an axolotl?

Axolotls don’t like too much human interaction. In fact, they are not exactly interested in being with the same species either. 

You must never overhandle an axolotl. Let them be as it will keep them happy and uninterrupted. 

4. Can you own an axolotl as a pet?

Axolotls are cute creatures, and they’re exotic too. The good news is you can keep them as pets in some parts of the U.S. 

You must check whether it’s legal in your state or not. If it is, you can buy them at exotic pet stores. Some store owners might even know other pet parents who might want to sell their axolotl babies.

5. What to feed your axolotl?

Axolotls can eat worms, snails, small fish, brine shrimp, and small strips of liver and beef. All these food items are good enough for your axolotl. 

If you wish to feed them, tap on the aquarium lid as this will help you get their attention. They will come to the surface of the water and know that it’s time for a quick feed. 

Concluding Thoughts 

Axolotls are adorable creatures, but you need to buy them the legit way. Find a store that sells them and does not flout the rules and regulations of the state. 

Do check whether buying axolotl is legit in your state. If it’s allowed, you need to ensure that you are keeping them in a comfortable environment and follow all the tips we’ve mentioned above. 

Since they’re an endangered species, it might make it all the more exciting to buy the expensive ones. Although indeed, they don’t need lots of attention, you should still treat them carefully so that they can live happily.

Susan R Elliston

I have over 11 years of experience as a vet working with a wonderful variety of species of innocent and lovely animals. Whilst I still work two days a week for a local practice, I realized that I could help more people by sharing my knowledge and experience with my readers.

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